Oil Bath, A Traditional Health Habit of South India
In South India people living in villages are having a traditional health habit of taking oil bath to improve and keep their good health. It is believed by the people of previous time that oil is penetrating inside the head to add cold to the body. But now it has been understood that applied oil dissolves the dusty, oily particles present on the skin and later those will removed by the application of herbal powder and warm water. This phenomena helps to make the skin to remove heat from inside of the body, which acts as a valve, to outside easily. Any way it is being experienced by the people of South India that their habit has great tendency to clear the body heat.
Commonly two varieties of oils such as coconut and gingle oils are used in this treatment. But it is experienced by the people that coconut oil is more desirable than the other one. In some places coconut oil is mixed with broken spices like pepper and garlic before boiling it to get the additional properties of spices. However, the plain coconut oil is used in the most parts of the country. About 25 ml of coconut oil is taken in a small amber colored or white colored bottle. Strictly avoid taking oil in plastic bottles just before the application as they might affect the medicinal properties of coconut oil. A small quantity of oil is applied on the tophead and it is let for a few minutes. Mostly warm water is preferred by the people to take oil bath. A green colored herbal powder ( soap nut powder ) and sikkakai powder are used to rinse on the head to remove the applied oil thoroughly. Toilet soaps are avoided in oil bath to have good result. Weekly once oil bath is followed by the people to have nice health. Fridays are selected by ladies to take oil bath and saturdays for gents.
Benefits of taking oil bath
1. It clears oily substances from the skin of total body and facilitate the same to transfer heat from its inside to outside.
2. By giving healthy cold to our body we can have good appetite and feeling of taste.
3. Healthy cold prevailing in our body prevents many diseases like jaundice, cancer and other viral diseases.
4. We can get healthy, deep sleep and good concentration in our daily activities.
5. Side effects of severe diet control can be cleared by this good healthy habit.
6. Skin and hair health can be maintained as it removes surface tension on the body.
7. It is very economical and also required once in a week.